Following is an example of my strategic planning self-assessment. The purpose of these self-assessments is to give you a concise checklist of best practices in a physician medical practice (and other healthcare practices for that matter). This checklist follows the Pareto Principle of focusing on the 20% of business practices that get you 80% of the results. Therefore, I don’t claim that it covers EVERYTHING. But it does cover a good percentage of the most important things.
Strategic Planning Checklist
- We do a strategic planning process at least annually to gather input from key stakeholders and data about our practice and marketplace.
- We review our mission and vision for the practice.
- We assess the size and growth of the market for our services.
- We compare our own “penetration” to the size of the market.
- We assess trends in managed care and payments and analyze our contracts.
- We evaluate competitors’ strengths and weaknesses, and how we can gain an edge.
- We assess the strengths and weaknesses of our referral network.
- We evaluate the depth and breadth of our overall service offerings.
- We assess the strengths and weaknesses of our marketing.
- We assess our payers, including our payer mix.
- We evaluate our clinical utilization rates and quality or care outcomes.
- We evaluate our internal controls.
- We evaluate our cost structure and financial ratios.
- We review our technology.
- We take a hard look at the patient’s experience, and how to improve it.
- We assess the capabilities of our clinicians and staff and identify any gaps to fill.
- We review physician and staff compensation.
- We assess our risks, compliance, and malpractice insurance.
- We evaluate our relationship with local hospital(s).
- We analyze our financial strength, including capacity for debt, days receivables, trends in aging of receivables, collection ratios, and profitability by services.
- We assess our facility and location, including whether we are located in the optimal zip code/area to serve our desired patient base.
- We do an overall “Strength, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats” or SWOT analysis about our practice.
- We determine which services and programs to expand, which to defend, and which to exit.
- We identify the top issues we need to address, and then identify key priorities to address these issues, achieve our vision, and be more competitive and profitable.
- We set annual performance/financial goals for our practice and develop a plan to achieve those goals.
- We assign specific accountability to achieve these initiatives, and a communication plan to follow up on them.
After reviewing this checklist, where do you think your physician medical practice stands from a strategic planning viewpoint? Time for a strategic planning retreat?
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